Former Burnaby Municipal Green Party candidate, Rick McGowan, is trying to bring some magic to his Metrotown neighbourhood.
McGowan is organizing a neighbourhood improvement association in Metrotown, which he is calling the Metrotown Area Green Improvement Coalition, or MAGIC.
"We want to gather individuals that are having issues in their community around the Metrotown area to raise their voice to a higher level so it can be heard a little better," he said.
Planning for the coalition is in the preliminary stages, he added, saying it is developing from conversations he's had with people in his neighbourhood.
Some of the issues McGowan wants to focus on include improving walkability in Metrotown and the height of highrises in the area.
He has spoken with Carly Franklin, who has a petition to cap highrise heights in Burnaby, and has signed her petition.
Other possible focuses are a playground at the Bob Prittie Library and a farmers' market near the SkyTrain, perhaps at Central Park, McGowan said.
"We should have a place where people can come out of their towers and meet, and buy their groceries every week during the summer," he added.
Many of the issues are ones he focused on when he was running for Burnaby council last fall, he said.
"We tried to get elected as Greens to influence the city on these issues," McGowan said. "Nothing seems to be changing."
He is looking for environmentally and socially minded people in the neighbourhood to join, he said.
The coalition is having its first event this weekend, with a Canada Day community cleanup.
McGowan came up with the idea with his daughter, Gabrielle, and said the annual Kingsway Imperial Neighbourhood Association cleanup inspired him.
McGowan expects the Metrotown cleanup to be on a much smaller scale, as the coalition is just starting out.
Volunteers should meet at Chaffey Burke Elementary School, at 4404 Sardis St., at 9 a.m. on Sunday.
A local recycler, Garbiz Removal and Recycling Ltd., has agreed to haul the trash once it's collected.
Marketplace IGA and other local businesses are making donations to the event, according to McGowan.
Sign-up takes place from 9 to 9:30 a.m., the cleanup goes until 10:30 a.m., and a Canada Day cake and light refreshments will be served after the cleanup is over.
Those wanting to volunteer should wear brightly coloured shirts for visibility. Gloves and bags will be provided.
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